This recipe was developed for our seniors cooking program, Food in Common. It was inspired by Hetty Mckinnon’s cookbook, Community.


    • 250g zucchini, peeled and coarsely grated
    • ½ cup bulgur wheat 
    • 1-2 fresh onion bulbs or ½ regular onion, diced – fresh onion tops finely sliced 
    • 1-2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
    • ½ tablespoon hot pepper / chili paste
    • 250ml canned tomatoes 
    • ½ tablespoon tomato paste
    • 1 tablespoon olive / vegetable oil 
    • Salt to taste


    1. Add olive oil and onions to a medium pot over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until soft and beginning to caramelize, about 15 minutes.
    2. Add the garlic and stir to combine for about another minute. Add the grated zucchini and cook until moisture is drawn out and completely soft, about 10 minutes.
    3. Add the pepper paste, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Stir to combine. Add the bulgur, salt and ¾-1 ½ cups of water. Increase heat to bring to a boil, cover and reduce to low until all the water is absorbed and bulgur is cooked through, about 20 minutes.
    4. After the 20 minutes, check the bulgur. If it’s cooked and the moisture is absorbed, it’s finished. If it’s cooked and there’s still moisture in the pot, continue cooking uncovered. If it still needs more time, add more water. When cooked, remove from heat and let stand for 10 minutes.
    5. Adjust seasoning. Sprinkle with finely chopped onion tops / herbs to serve.


  • If you have any leftover veggies, I’d recommend adding them after the onion and before the tomato + harissa. 
  • Make sure you use up the rest of your can of tomatoes – perhaps a spiced tomato soup with a touch of the harissa too. Like this one here:
  • You can also use any remaining harissa to marinate meats/fish/eggplant/tofu/mushrooms with a splash of olive oil. 
  • As always – if you have leftovers, most things can doctored with some stock and blitzed to make soup. 
  • I’d serve this with a fresh lettuce salad, some pitta chips and yoghurt dip.

  • Want to learn more about Food in Common? Check out our other recipes here and read about the program in more detail here.

Follow the recipe or watch George and Maddy cooking it here: